EU voters think their countries are heading in the wrong direction

EU voters think their countries are heading in the wrong direction

European Union voters in France, Germany, Italy and Greece think their countries are heading in the wrong direction but there is not yet any Europe-wide inclination to follow Britain toward exiting the bloc, according to a poll published on Thursday.


Britain's shock June 23 Brexit vote, which was praised at the time by then U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump as a "miracle", has raised questions about the future of post-World War Two attempts at European integration, Reuters says.


After Brexit and Trump's victory in the United States, investors are watching for any sign that popular discontent is on the rise ahead of 2017 elections in France and Germany, and a likely vote in Italy. The survey was carried out Nov. 25 to Dec. 7, before the Dec. 19 truck attack on a crowded Christmas market in Berlin.


The right-wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, which was created 3 years ago in opposition to euro zone bailouts, laid the blame on German Chancellor Angela Merkel.


A WIN/Gallup International online survey of 14,969 people showed voters were unhappy across the European Union but that support for the EU remained above 60% in most of the biggest member states.


The poll showed 89% of voters in Greece thought their country was heading in the wrong direction. In France the figure was 82%, Italy 79% and Germany 62%.


While EU voters are clearly discontented, there was only a small rise in the number of people who would vote for an exit: 36% from 33% across the 15 European countries including Britain that were surveyed.


The percentage of people in Germany, France and Belgium who would vote to leave fell from a year ago. Finland and Greece saw an increase in support for leaving, up to 40% from 29% and to 46% from 38% respectfully.